FUNimation Serves Up Frightening Anime for Halloween

This Halloween season, tune into FUNimation to watch some of the most popular horror anime including Tokyo Ghoul, Higurashi: When They Cry – GOU, Hellsing Ultimate, Deadman Wonderland, Danganronpa: The Animation, Paranoia Agent, and Junji Ito “Collection.” FUNimation has a diabolical line-up of anime featuring ghosts, ghouls, demons and maniacal characters that will make you glad you’re safely inside your home.

Tokyo Ghoul

Don’t miss this twisted horror anime that has become a hit with fans.

About:
Ken Kaneki is a loner. In a world where ghouls—human-like creatures who survive on human flesh—and people are at war, his biggest concern is which novel to pick up next. But when a date with the mysterious Rize turns deadly, a life-saving operation horrifyingly transforms him into a human-ghoul hybrid. Can he find his place in a society where it’s hunt or be hunted?

Clip: https://youtu.be/gbkm2c2hrGE

TV-MA
Funimation.com/tokyoghoul
Copyright: ©Sui Ishida/Shueisha,Tokyo Ghoul Production Committee

Higurashi: When They Cry – GOU

One of the most anticipated new series this fall, Higurashi: When They Cry – New is a reimagining of one of the most famous cult-classic horror anime and Japanese horror video games with modernized animation for 2020.

About:
New kid Keiichi Maebara is settling into his new home of peaceful Hinamizawa village. Making quick friends with the girls from his school, he’s arrived in time for the big festival of the year. But something about this isolated town seems “off,” and his feelings of dread continue to grow. With a gnawing fear that he’s right, what dark secrets could this small community be hiding?

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XCcf-VlezFg

TV-MA
Funimation.com/higurashi
Copyright: ©2020Ryukishi07/Higurashi-P

Hellsing Ultimate

The series, based on the popular manga, features Arucard, a true anti-hero character who taunts his enemies before destroying them.

About:
The rogue vampire Arucard is the Hellsing Organization’s deadliest instrument in its mission to protect the British Empire from satanic ghouls and Nazi freaks. With recently-turned policewoman Seras Victoria as his servant, Arucard haunts the shadows as a sinister force of good.

Clip: https://youtu.be/-3ktLn2Z5fE

TV-MA
Funimation.com/hellsingultimate
Copyright: © Kouta Hirano • Shonen Gahosha Co., Ltd./WILD GEESE. Distributed by Funimation® Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Deadman Wonderland

“gory, explicitly violent, frequently over-the-top, and viscerally cruel” -Anime News Network

About:
Ganta is convicted of slaughtering his classmates—a crime he didn’t commit. The authorities lock him up in a brutal, privately owned prison: Deadman Wonderland, where the incarcerated are forced to fight gladiatorial battles for tourists.

Clip: https://youtu.be/oWzHmPSdwqo

TV-MA
Funimation.com/deadmanwonderland
Copyright: ©2010 Jinsei Kataoka, Kazuma Kondou/Kadokawashoten/Deadman Wonder Land Ward G. Licensed by Funimation® Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Danganronpa: The Animation

About:
Hope’s Peak Academy is an elite private school that only accepts the very best. The hallowed halls are ruled by the sadistic administrator Monokuma, who declares that the only way to pass the class is by sending a fellow student home in a body bag.

TV-MA
© Spike Chunsoft Co., Ltd. / KIBOUGAMINE ANIME COMMITTEE All Rights Reserved. Licensed by Funimation® Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Paranoia Agent

About:
From Satoshi Kon, the legendary director of Perfect Blue, Millennium Actress, and Paprika comes a dark and mysterious, thought-provoking psychological thriller. Citizens across Musashino City are being attacked and terrorized. Two detectives are put on the case, but will they be able to solve the mystery before there’s another wave of victims?

Clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QEsNDDwhSJ4&t=1s

TV-MA
Funimation.com/Paranoiaagent
© Satoshi Kon • MADHOUSE / PARANOIA AGENT COMMITTEE

Junji Ito “Collection”

About:
Enter the twisted world of Junji Ito’s works of horror. Witness the most hair-raising stories from Junji Ito Masterpiece Collection and Fragments of Horror like you’ve never seen them before. For any fans who seek the thrill of shocking imagery and ill-fated characters, this whole show is made for you.

Clip https://youtu.be/yKHJ6w6LzHM

TV-MA
Funimation.com/junji-ito-collection
© Junji Ito / Asahi Shimbun Publications,The Junji Ito “Collection” Production Committee Licensed by Funimation® Productions, Ltd. All Rights Reserved.

Sekai no Owari Vocalist Fukase’s Bad Mood Animated Shorts Are Streaming on Amazon Globally

The official Twitter account for Bad Mood — the character brand of Fukase, lead vocalist for the band SEKAI NO OWARI — has announced that animated shorts based on the brand are now streaming globally on Amazon Prime Video. The first 17-minute episode of the Bad Mood anime’s six total episodes is streaming on Amazon Prime Video in English.

The shorts follow The Pink Elephants, a fictional band with five members: Fishman, Butt, Rabbit, UFO, and Moth. The shorts depict the havoc in their daily lives.

The cast includes:

  • Walter Q Jackson is Fishman
  • Daniel Duncan is Moth
  • Graham Barker is UFO
  • Edward Mo is Butt
  • Vinay Murthy is Rabbit
  • Sachiko Relnich is additional voices

SEKAI NO OWARI perform the theme song “Fangs.”

Source: ANN

Stellvia Anime Is Now Streaming on Amazon Prime

The Fandom Post is reporting that Amazon Prime is now streaming all 26 episodes of the Stellvia anime on its service. Individual episodes are available for purchase for a buck, and the whole season in standard definition is available for $20.99.

The series was directed by Tatsuo Sato and had Makoto Uno as the character designer for it with animation produced by Xebec.

The story of Stellvia is described as:

In 2167, the Earth was catastrophically damaged by a nearby supernova that had exploded. The explosion sent an electromagnetic wave of radiation that swept over the Earth. Now 186 year later, another more destructive wave, known as “The Second Wave,” is on it’s way to Earth…

15-year-old computer genius Shima Katase has been dreaming of going up into space longer than she can remember. So when given the chance to enter space piloting school she jumps at the chance. However, piloting is a lot more complicated than programming a computer. But what if she were to combine the two? Genius or troublemaker, Shima is certainly going to be making a name for herself among the faculty as the Second Wave approaches…

Source: The Fandom Post

Hulu Adds More Dubbed Episodes of the Fruits Basket Reboot Anime

The Fandom Post is reporting that Hulu has added more dubbed episodes of the Fruits Basket reboot anime to its lineup. The site now has all of the dubbed episodes of the first season, as well as the first 13 episodes of the second season.

The new series has Yoshihide Ibata directing based on the series composition by Taku Kishimoto. Masaru Shindo is handling the character designs with TMS Entertainment handling the production.

The English cast includes:

  • Laura Bailey is Tohru Honda
  • Eric Vale is Yuki Soma
  • Jerry Jewel is Kyo Soma
  • John Burgmeier is Shigure Soma
  • Tia Ballard is Kagura Soma
  • Mikaela Krantz is Momiji Soma
  • Justin Cook is Hatsuharu Soma
  • Kent Williams is Hatori Soma
  • Elizabeth Maxwell is Arisa Uotani
  • Colleen Clinkenbeard is Akito Soma
  • Christopher R. Sabat is Ayame Soma
  • Jad Saxton is Saki Hanajima

Source: The Fandom Post

Netflix to Stream the Second Season of the Great Pretender Anime Outside of Japan on November 25, 2020

Netflix has announced that it will begin streaming the second season of the Great Pretender anime series outside of Japan on November 25, 2020. The second season consists of “Case 4” (episodes 15-23) of the anime.

“Case 4,” titled “Wizard of Far East,” takes place in Shanghai and Tokyo. The story features the “Suzaku Association,” a group engaged in children trafficking, and Laurent’s past.

Netflix began streaming Great Pretender outside of Japan on August 20, 2020. The series premiered in Japan on July 8, 2020.

Source: ANN

Crunchyroll Is Streaming Dr. Stone’s Jump Special Anime Festa Video on YouTube

Crunchyroll has announced that it has begun streaming Stone Wars Eve of the Battle Special Feature, the Jump Special Anime Festa event’s new special video for the Dr. Stone: Stone Wars anime, on YouTube. The video is mostly a recap, but it also includes new footage.

Dr. Stone: Stone Wars, the forthcoming second season of Dr. Stone, is scheduled to premiere in January 2021. Crunchyroll will simulcast the series worldwide except in Asia, and FUNimation Entertainment will stream a dub.

Dr. Stone premiered in July 2019. Crunchyroll simulcast the first season as it aired, and FUNimation Entertainment streamed a dub of the season. The anime premiered on Toonami in August 2019.

Source: ANN

Anime Biography: Michal Friedman

Michal Friedman has provided voices for some English dubs of anime series. Her credits include Esther in Mobile Suit Gundam UC, the cute version of Paya in Magical Witch Punie-chan, Seisei in Samurai Deeper Kyo and various roles in The Gokusen. In addition to anime voice acting, Friedman has also provided voices for Annalise in Speed Racer: The Next Generation, Beeauty in Little Bee, Fifi in Colin the Invincible, B.B. in Island Tumoya, and Tune in Winx Club. For Winx Club, she also provided voices for background characters.

Friedman’s voice can also be heard in the Playboy: The Mansion – Party Pack video game. She has also done voice over work for commercials and promos for the New Jersey lottery, HBO Family, and Zoom Tan. Friedman also recorded bi-monthly CD inserts/book on tapes for Reader’s Digest ENGLISH2GO, provided the voice of Beauty and other female roles for a book on tape version of Beauty and the Beast, provided a voice for the audiobook version of Emma Donoghue’s Room, and was also the voice of Stephanie for the CD-ROM promo for Balfour High School Rings.

Friedman is also a singer and songwriter and recorded her music under the name Michal the Girl. She released two albums of original music: 2001’s Tongue Tied and 2005’s Strung Out. In 2004, two of her songs were featured in the film, Travellers and Magicians, and she wrote one of the songs specifically for the film. Friedman co-wrote a song for a commercial for CanCam Magazine (a Japanese women’s fashion magazine), and the song “Tongue Tied” was selected for a Reader’s Digest insert. She has also provided vocals at the Loser’s Lounge tributes, and performed at Cathy Cervenka’s Cathyland Productions’ Madonnathon, Love Bites, and Sham*Rock (U2) tributes.

In addition, Friedman provided vocals for European dance music tracks. Notably, she appears on ATB’s “The Autumn Leaves” (from his 2004 album, No Silence), “One Way Out” and “Bombs Away” by Niels Van Gogh (from 2004 and 2005, respectively), “Pure Energy” by Accuface (from 2006), “Cool Your Engines” by Kareema (from 2004), “Corrupted” by Signalrunners (from 2006), “As We Run” by Kodiak Star (from 2004), and “Sense of Time” by Koris vs. Djule (from 2005).

Michal Friedman passed away in New York City on November 25, 2011 from complications after giving birth to twins by cesarean section. The twin children, Jackson James and Reverie Vivian Snyder, were born healthy. She is survived by her husband, Jay Snyder (who is also known as voice actor Dan Green).

Musician Maisa Tsuno Passes Away

NHK has reported that guitarist, composer, and Akai Kōen band leader Maisa Tsuno passed away on October 18, 2020. She was 29 years old at the time of her passing. The report states that police are investigating the incident as a possible suicide.

Tsuno was one of Akai Kōen’s founding members, and was the composer for all of the band’s music. She also composed music for such artists as Airi Suzuki, SMAP, Morning Musume, and more.

In anime, Tsuno was one of the composers that lent their talents to Shinichiro Watanabe’s Carole & Tuesday anime. Tsuno composed the “Round & Laundry” song, which appears in the anime’s third episode played by the main characters.

As part of Akai Kōen, she performed the theme song “Zettai Reido” for the Drifting Dragons anime.

Source: ANN

My Favorite Anime Opening Themes From the 2000’s to the Present

Recently, I posted a list of my favorite anime opening themes that came out between the 1970’s and 1990’s. This is a follow-up to that post, and it is a list of my five favorite anime opening themes that came out between 2000 and the present.

Instead of publishing this as a top 5 list, I will be sharing my favorites by organizing them in alphabetical order. I will be using the titles to alphabetize the list.

For whatever reason, WordPress is not allowing me to embed YouTube videos into my post. Instead, I have made the title of each song a link to a YouTube video.

V6 – “Change The World” (Inuyasha)

Fans of Inuyasha will recognize this as the first opening theme song for the series, which was released in 2000(!). It’s hard to believe that the Inuyasha anime premiered 20 years ago.

“Change The World” is a catchy song musically, and the vocalist for V6 delivers the lyrics so earnestly and so enthusiastically. This is a perfect blend to make this a memorable song and stand out as an exceptional opening theme for an anime series.

Joe Inoue – “Closer” (Naruto Shippuden)

This song was used as the fourth opening theme song for the Naruto Shippuden anime series. Of the theme songs for Naruto Shippuden, this one has always stood out to me. It’s catchy as heck, and I love the feel of this song musically. Whenever I hear it, I can easily see the visuals from the opening credits in my head.

When the final theme song soundtrack was released for Naruto Shippuden, there weren’t enough tracks to fill the disc, so they had fans vote for their favorite themes. Not surprisingly, Joe Inoue’s “Closer” was among the fan-chosen songs that appeared on that soundtrack. And according to Wikipedia, if it’s accurate, “Closer” was only the second single of Joe Inoue’s career. Wow!

Dean Fujioka – “History Maker” (Yuri!!! On Ice)

From the first note of this opening theme, you can hear there’s something special about it. It doesn’t sound like a typical anime opening theme song, which catches your attention immediately. Also, it’s one of those rare anime opening themes that’s sung entirely in English.

I love the upbeat and positive vibe of the song, as well as what the song is saying with its lyrics. And Dean Fujioka’s vocal performance just blows me away every time. You can hear his conviction as he sings the lyrics, and combining his vocal delivery with this musical arrangement sends chills down my spine.

Yuki – “Melody of the Slope” (Kids on the Slope)

This theme song was written by anime composer Yoko Kanno for Kids on the Slope, an anime about music. Even though the music featured in the series is jazz, this pop song includes jazz references in its lyrics, which helps to tie it in with the anime that the song was composed for.

I love the dynamics of this song, and how it goes from being soft to packing a punch and becoming catchy. The song does this at least a couple of times, and it sounds natural rather than jarring. Yoko Kanno composed another winner with this one.

ROOKIEZ is PUNK’D – “Reclimb” (Yowamushi Pedal)

When I went to watch the first episode of Yowamushi Pedal, I wasn’t entirely sure about what I was walking into. Yes, I read the description about it being about a high school bicycle racing club, but that was all I knew. I had never considered myself a fan of sports anime prior to this, so I didn’t think I’d enjoy the show. Well, the show grabbed me within its first couple of episodes, and I think this catchy opening theme song also helped.

It’s an upbeat song that you would expect to accompany a sports anime, and you can’t help but move along with it when you hear it. The vocalists on this song help to accentuate the exuberance of the music with their enthusiastic vocal delivery.

Unison Square Garden – “Tracing Orion” (Tiger & Bunny)

This opening theme is a fun and upbeat number, and not one you would initially expect for an anime about superheroes. However, as you watch the series and experience the tone of the writing, the sound of this opening theme makes a lot more sense.

I know I say this a lot, but this is a catchy song. But I think that being catchy is one of the ingredients to having a successful anime opening theme song. Sometimes originality helps, but I think that how catchy and memorable a song is helps to determine how classic and loved an anime opening theme song is in the long run.

Tubi TV Adds the Yamibo: Darkness, The Hat, And Travelers Of The Books Anime

The Fandom Post is reporting that Tubi TV has added the Yamibo: Darkness, The Hat, And Travelers Of The Books anime series to its service.

The story of the series is described as:

Hatsuki is a high school student living with her sister, Hatsumi, who she has a huge crush on. On Hatsumi’s 16th birthday, she is suddenly surrounded by a green light and disappears in front of Hatsuki. She manages to follow Hatsumi with the help of a being resembling a fat baby chick (literally), ending up in a place called “The Great Library,” which is full of different worlds stored in books. Hatsumi wasn’t there, though, so the search for Hatsuki’s great love begins and involves traveling from book to book.

Yamibo: Darkness, The Hat, And Travelers Of The Books originally aired on Japanese television from October 2-December 25, 2003.

Source: The Fandom Post